Konica Minolta DiMAGE X31 Review

Steve's Digicams

Features & Controls

The DiMAGE X31 employs the same revolutionary f/2.8-3.7 3X "folded" optical zoom lens that first appeared on the DiMAGE X and has since been used on the DiMAGE Xi and Xt cameras. It has a focal length coverage of 36mm - 108mm in 35mm format and is constructed of all glass with 10 elements in 9 groups (including two double-sided aspheric elements). An automatic protective cap closes over the lens when it is powered down.

Minolta's legendary expertise in optical lens design has led to the creation of a unique compact folded 3x optical zoom lens with a depth of only 0.8 inches. By using a high quality prism that folds the optical path, the entire lens is positioned vertically within the body. This efficient optical design requires only a small zooming motor, allowing for quick and quiet focal length changes.

Auto focus is handled with a Wide Area focus system, the focus range is from a very close 3.9 inches (0.1 m) to infinity.

To the left of the lens is the self-portrait mirror. You choose the Portrait function from the menu, set the lens to full wide angle, hold the camera at arm's length and frame the shot using the mirror image.

Minolta DiMAGE X31

The built in flash offers Auto, Fill-flash, Red-eye reduction and Night Portrait modes, it recycles in approximately 5 seconds. The flash range is approximately 0.8 - 9.5 feet (0.25-2.9m) in Wide angle and from approximately 0.8 - 7.5 feet (0.25-2.3m) in Telephoto (Camera sensitivity: ISO 200)

Minolta DiMAGE X31

You can give your X31 a sun-shielded and magnified LCD with the $19.95 Hoodman H-DCR hood. This rubber (collapsable) hood mounts on any digicam with a 1.5 to 1.8 inch LCD screen. It has a 2x magnifier that allows a close look at your color LCD.

Minolta DiMAGE X31

Controls are minimal and simple. Along the top is the Mode Switch to select either the still or movie recording mode. The 4-way controller serves as the zoom lens control by using the center Up and Down switch. In Playback mode this also controls the zoomed image and index functions. The 4-way controller is also used to navigate the menu system and to select images in playback. The MENU button calls up the onscreen menu system. On the bottom is the Play/Review button, press it to view the stored still images or movies.

See the page three for a description of the onscreen menu displays.

Minolta DiMAGE X31

On top is the ON / OFF switch and the Shutter Release.

Minolta DiMAGE X31

On the right side is the USB 1.1 data port.

Below is a DC IN jack for an optional AC power supply.

There is no video out capability.

Minolta DiMAGE X31

The DiMAGE X31 is equipped with a SD card slot and is compatible with any size Secure Digital or MultiMedia Card. The camera ships with a 16MB SD card.

Storage capacity using 16 MB card: (640 x 480) Standard: 94, (1280 x 960) Standard: 37, (1600 x 1200) Standard: 25, (2048 x 1536) Fine: 9, (2048 x 1536) Standard: 16, Movie: (320 x 240) 47 seconds, (160 x 120) 189 seconds
(Numbers above are approx., and may vary depending on the subject)

Minolta DiMAGE X31

The camera is powered by two standard AA type batteries. We strongly recommend the use of high-capacity NiMH rechargeable batteries. Minolta claims it has the capacity to record 90 pictures (half with flash) and has a 80 minute playback capability when using alkaline type batteries. This camera has no optical viewfinder, you must use the LCD monitor full time so it's important to use powerful batteries.

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